Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Greatest Plans "Of Mice and Men"!

It seems like an age since I have actually had the time to update my blog, or anything else for that matter. The quote that I have used as the title somehow sums up the past few days (I think is attributed to George Bernard Shaw; do correct me if I am mistaken.).

Life has been hectic; I thought it would never end. Great fun, but very hard work! Friday was planned with great precision. I was going to meet the Scout Leaders at the den, to pack and transport our kit to the mountain campsite.

We were agreed that we should get there early and claim the best pitch; what could be more straight forward? Thursday had been bad enough; what with the whole car door handle episode. Friday had all the makings of a nightmare, as things slowly began to unravel at the seams.

Having made an appointment to get my car door repaired, I found myself ringing to postpone it. Things were just too tight & it was going to muck up my whole day! It going to be a busy day; we knew that, but we hadn't anticipated the half of what happened.

We had excellent help; in the form of our caretaker, his taking care went beyond the call of duty. In the beginning things were actually going pretty well. We set off in our separate vehicles; each carrying an assortment of essential items. We were to reconvene at the mountain top campsite, put up the Icelandic’s & the mess tent, meander back in time to shower, pack up our own kit bags and meet the Scouts at the den by 6pm.

What we hadn’t anticipated was BM’s van, complete with all the tents, overheating. If only the pump had been inserted into the flask of hot sweet coffee, if only we had had the patrol box with us, if only we had had cups (as it was I located a used paper cup & the bottom of a mineral bottle – the coffee still tasted good), if only we hadn’t missed the sign, if only…, & so it goes on!

When eventually our intrepid foursome finally got back together; very much behind schedule, we worked our socks off. It must have been very frustrating for GL & BM; the caretaker & I had never erected Icelandic’s before so we needed constant instruction and guidance, hmmm… Still no tempers were lost; and three tents later the other Scout troupes arrived! “First up, Best Dressed!” as BM always likes to say!

There were no luxurious showers that afternoon, only those worked up in the heat; we arrived home late and even later at the Den! The showers at the centre were out of bounds; problems with the water; containers of drinking water were ferried in daily. The following day we were STINKERS!

BB, his friend TD & I arrived at the camp rather later than intended; having detoured via the cheapest petrol station in town; back home (some bright spark thought she had left her glasses on top of the sitting room radiator, oops!), then stuck in a large village funeral and we still got there before the rest of them.

It was dark & the field was crammed with tents of various shapes and sizes, kids running everywhere and the smell of wood smoke completed the picture. We were there; at last, very much thanks to our troubled journeying of earlier that day, those mountain roads can be troublesome at the best of times so a practice run came in handy!

Unfortunately GL wasn’t quite so lucky; they had traversed the whole of the two counties adjacent to the mountainside, wrong turnings had been taken and they were found themselves attempting to traverse a concrete bridge down a grassy single track gravel lane suitable only for ramblers!? It just goes to show that you should never trust a man with a GPS Satellite Navigation System. Guess what his new nickname is?

Despite a dodgy start; the weekend under canvass was a tremendous success. Not only did everyone enjoy the experience, we all took something different away with us. For me one of the high points was learning how to tie knots. Admittedly, I did attend the workshop twice; helping the leader running it. That’s my story and I am sticking to it…

Two days later the wind, sun & frost burnt lips are beginning to regain their former smooth appearance once more, BB is still sleeping like a log and I am beginning to wake up!

All the Best,

Polly Px Polly Peirce

ps If you click the link on the title, you can find out who really wrote Of Mice & Men! See, I am beginning to wake up...

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